06 Jun Climate Change and the Paris Accord
Today we borrow heavily from science, from NASA and NOAA. We trust these sources as they have been trusted for generations. Their mission is our mission, “to foresee, to know in advance.” For this is the very definition of Previse.
Skin is not only our largest organ, our skin is under constant attack from the environment. What we do today to take of our skin helps improve its longevity, its elasticity, and prevent future skin cancers. Just as we take action to care for our body, we believe our mission extends to prudent, preventative action with our natural surroundings. We only have one planet after all.
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April 2017 NOAA reports carbon dioxide levels at 406.17 parts per million or ppm. Data shows this level of carbon dioxide eclipses record highs going back nearly 2,000 years.
So why is carbon dioxide (CO2) such a concern?
First we need to appreciate the various greenhouse gases that create the greenhouse effect. These gases include water vapor (H2O), methane (CH4), nitrous oxide (N2O) and ozone (O3) as well as carbon dioxide (CO2). Carbon dioxide is emitted through volcanic eruptions, decomposition, ocean release and respiration. Carbon dioxide is also emitted from human activity, such as burning of fossil fuels like coal, oil and natural gas. Without greenhouse gases our planet would be a frozen ball of ice!
Science has shown that deforestation combined with greater fossil fuel use is stretching our planets “lungs” beyond capacity.
The problem is that the rate of carbon dioxide production has increased to a point where it can no longer be absorbed by plants, bacteria, and algae at a balanced rate. These organisms convert carbon dioxide (CO2) into oxygen (O) though … you guessed it… photosynthesis. Our trees, plants, bacteria and algae are our planets lungs.
Starting around 1950 the rate of carbon dioxide emissions increased to a point that surpassed the photosynthesis processes. Essentially there is an abundance of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. This excess carbon dioxide creates a stronger greenhouse effect, which in turn heats up our atmosphere – but in this case it’s getting too hot. The only way to reduce the temperature is to reduce carbon dioxide and increase photosynthesis.
So what is the Paris Accord?
The Paris Agreement (French: Accord de Paris), or Paris climate accord and Paris climate agreement, is an agreement within the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) dealing with greenhouse gas emissions mitigation, adaptation and finance starting in the year 2020. The language of the agreement was negotiated by representatives of 196 parties at the 21st Conference of the Parties of the UNFCCC in Paris and adopted by consensus on 12 December 2015. As of June 2017, 195 UNFCCC members have signed the agreement, 148 of which have ratified it.
In the Paris Agreement, each country determines, plans and regularly reports its own contribution it should make in order to mitigate global warming. There is no mechanism to force a country to set a specific target by a specific date, but each target should go beyond previously set targets.
With respect to the 195 member nations who signed the accord, only two have not – Nicaragua and Syria. Only one has withdrawn – that is the United States. The United States is the largest producer of carbon dioxide.
So we ask ourselves what can we do, as Previse, as a tribe, now that our federal government has rejected the global agreement? Stay the course, of course!
You have guided each and every action we make. Our choice of using sustainable ingredients, botanicals and organic ingredients, over chemicals was made by you. We are driven by nature, not by chemicals. These choices ensure we use less petroleum. Petroleum use is directly linked to carbon dioxide emissions. So in our own small way we are making a continued dent in the climate change phenomenon.
Want to make more of an impact? Please contact us and share your story. We will publish as part of our future e’blasts and blogs. We are stronger together than divided.
Thank you from all of us at Previse.